NEWS BLOG (WSAU) I suppose my 9-11 experience is different than most people living in the American heartland. I was on-air that morning at WICC in Bridgeport, Connecticut. On a clear day from our high-rise studios you could see the New York City skyline. The morning of 9-11 was a very clear day.
Today my emotions are a jumble… I don’t know what to think or feel about that fateful day 11 years ago.
Many newspeople will tell you that when they’re on-air during a tragic story, they don’t feel anything. Professional instincts take over. You do your job – you report on it. When I got home that night, after a very long day, there was time to reflect.
I was angry at first. The nerve of them! And that night, we didn’t even know who them was.
Sadness came a few days later. Three people close to me lost loved ones. And it took days to sort out who was dead and who was just unaccounted for.
I don’t want to unpack those emotions year after year. I know that the attack itself is fading in our national memory.
I also know that I was changed that day. It’s hard to explain exactly how. I think, when confronted with sadness, I have deeper emotions. I started going to church more after 9-11, mostly because of a kind minister who was a guest on one of our talk shows in the days after the attack. Rediscovering my faith was, in a strange way, something good that came out of something very bad.
That’s my wish – my challenge – for everyone on this anniversary. Of course, never forget. But, please, making something good come from it. Maybe you are more patriotic. Maybe you are more aware of what makes our way of life better. Maybe you have a new respect for firefighters and police officers. Maybe our freedoms mean more to you now. Maybe you have a deeper love for those who are close to you. All of those are good things.